An astounding creation has been introduced to improve the education system of Pakistan. Nearpeer is an online library featuring lectures on various courses ranging from O’Levels till university. Ammar Ali Ayub and Shahrukh Swati, alumni of LUMS, co-founded Nearpeer in November, 2015. They are ecstatic with the investment of Ali Aziz, Founder and CEO at Shopistan and they believe that this investment will aid in broadening their boundaries and catering to more universities, hence reaching out to more students who will profit from their brilliant startup.
The need for Nearpeer arouse when the co-founders realized that students faced problems in studies even after attending 90 minutes of a lecture; the reason being that the lectures were tedious and unsatisfactory. Students would then pursue alternate resources. Though there are ample of lectures online, they are not concise and match to the difficulty level of an individual student. On top of that, it is very time consuming to sieve out the internet. For this specific purpose, Nearpeer was developed so that students can find the right lecture and conserve time. One of the best features of Nearpeer is that it provides lectures from the students themselves who have a strong grasp of the course.
Nearpeer has a motto in which they have pledged not to be a burden on society by creating job opportunities for many people. Every year, there are fresh graduates who seek jobs but the economy does not have enough openings to accommodate everyone. Nearpeer generates jobs by hiring these students as lecturers, where these students give the detailed explanation of the course at hand with key tips and extra points. Therefore, it becomes easier for the students to study from these lectures from a senior’s perspective as they are more comprehendible. Also, the seniors have been through examinations and are well aware of what kinds of questions are asked. Ali Aziz has promised to mentor the lecturers and provide them the entire technical and operational support. Even before graduating, the co-founders were able to create job opportunity for almost 22 people. The partnership will Shopistan will help them carry forward their motto.
The name of the startup is very intriguing on its own. When Shahrukh Swati went on a research scholarship to US, he was given the designation of ‘Nearpeer Mentor’ for acting as a bridge between student and the teacher. After his return, the name Nearpeer best described the project and it was chosen.
The journey of Nearpeer has been promising from the start. Their first milestone was their partnership with SKANS CA FINAL and Mr. Atif Abidi at SKANS CA FINAL. A crash course was devised as test case and launched. It was sold to 200 students at a cost of Rs. 5000. Students came from all over the continent including Oman, Dubai, Qatar and Afghanistan. In the beginning they only had 1200 paying customers and 3000 users overall. However to this day, Nearpeer have gained 2500 paying customers and approximately 6200 online users. At the moment 55 courses are being offered with almost 100 courses in the pipeline for university verticle as well as 10+ CA full courses. They exist at LUMS, LSE and Chartered Accountants Market and soon will be expanding their courses to GIK, PIEAS, NUST, ITU and FAST. They hope to cater to courses of O’Levels, A’Levels , MCAT and ECAT. A minimum of 35 minutes is spent by each user to Nearpeer webpage.
Nearpeer have a very bright vision concerning the education system of Pakistan. After enormous sales, they have decided to provide free online university courses to students of cities like Multan, Bahawalpur, Sargodha etc. to provide them with quality education prevalent to universities like LUMS, GIK and NUST without any cost. They want to give back to the community by sharing the research with the upcoming educational institutes to provide quality courses.
Nearpeer have been selected for ATX+PAK Exchange Program which will able them to expand to into University of Texas and Texas State University. Dr. Umar Saif highly supports the new startups and the investments being made in them. Nearpeer will provide ease to all students who wish to benefit from this remarkable idea.